Nissan Qashqai Review - It says a lot about the rising popularity of the crossover that the format, along with superminis, made up the bulk of 2.5 million new cars sold in the UK last year. Surely then, it says a lot about the Nissan Qashqai as well, with more than a million of the things sold since it first launched back in 2007. People are buying Qashqais up like they're going out of fashion, but does it still have what it takes to keep up with fresher, newer rivals? Generally considered to be the first true crossover as we know it, the Nissan Qashqai aimed to combine SUV ride height and capability with everything people love about comfortable family cars. To that end, the cabin is big and spacious and quite well laid out with this large centre-mounted touchscreen. Although some leather panelling or something in the top trims would be nice to break the mundanity of all this plastic, but given that this is a car that starts from around just 18 and a half grand, it’s not bad at all. We’ve got the range-topping Tekna model, which will set you a little under £25,000, but it comes with an impressive amount of kit that includes automatic lights, leather seats and cruise control, plus DAB radio and a leather-wrapped steering wheel. Pound-for-pound, the base Qashqai comes with a lot more standard equipment than the majority of its rivals, while all except the entry-level model get Nissan’s full suite of Safety Shield technologies which includes things like blind spot detection and a 360-degree surround-view camera and which helped the car earn the title of the safest car you can buy.
Climbing in the back, things are spacious and both leg and headroom are decent, while you’ve also got ISOFIX attachments for child seats. However, if seven seats are a necessity then Nissans larger and ever-so-slightly more rugged X-Trail might be a better option. Boot space with the rear seats folded up clocks in at 430 litres, but adjust this false floor and fold the rear seats down and you get a full 1,585 litres, more than enough to take what most average sized families can throw at it. We have to admit that when I first took delivery of this car I was a little bit unenthused, it just felt a little squishy around the edges, but having driven it for a few days it has actually grown on me a lot. The ride, while not as cosseting as some of its rivals, is pretty comfortable, with a plushness to the way it tackles bumps and cracks in the road; you know they’re there, but you don’t really feel them. Likewise, while you don’t get much in terms of feedback from the steering it is reasonably well weighted and direct, and there’s not quite as much body roll as you might expect from a car of this size. The first-generation Qashqai had a bit of a reputation for being quite noisy on the road, but this model is impressively refined and hushed, even at motorway speeds, while the 109bhp 1.5-litre diesel engine in this model is nowhere near as gruff as some of the oil-burners in its rivals.
It’s got a fair amount of punch as well, but the real selling point of this engine is its efficiency. With front-wheel drive and a manual gearbox, the only options available with this motor, it emits just 103g/km of CO2. Nissan says it can return up to 70.6mpg on the combined cycle, though we’ve only been able to return around 45 in this car, but that’s still not bad. The gearbox, however, could use some work as it feels really rather clunky; the automatic available in other engines is much smoother. Prices for the Qashqai kick off at £18,545 and range all the way up to around £29,000, making the base model considerably cheaper and more cost-effective than rivals like the Mazda CX-5 and the Volkswagen Tiguan. If there’s one criticism you could aim at the Qashqai, it’s that it mightn’t offer much by way of thrills. But to say this is unfair; it’s comfortable, it’s safe, it’s well-equipped and it sells like hotcakes. The original genre-defining family crossover might find itself with stiffer competition these days than ever, but it’s still a chart topper nonetheless. Thanks for visit Nissan Qashqai Review.